We all know the experience of fighting for something, struggling for something we want or believe in. How do you judge the value of your struggle? There are three different kinds of struggling.
You’ve decided that someone must win, someone must lose. It’s probably important that you keep telling stories about yourself and the opponent so that you can keep feeling justified that you are right about your position. This leads to violence.
You’ve appointed yourself the savior by doing the thinking and work for them. Great idea if you want to continually feel unappreciated and resentful. This leads to martyrdom.
This is the definition of compassion, from the Latin root meaning “to struggle or suffer alongside.” Suffering With assumes shared responsibility for outcomes, equal worthiness and dignity. This is the most difficult of the three.
Two of these will give you a short-term rush of self-justification and make things worse in the long run. One of them is hard at first and the long-term rewards are great.
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